Letter for Release – June 12, 2020

LGBTQ Organizations and Leaders Call to Defund the Police and Invest in Communities


This week, Black-led organizations in Minneapolis, including the Black Visions Collective, Reclaim the Block, and MPD 150 won a historic victory when a veto-proof majority of the Minneapolis City Council committed to defunding and dismantling their police department and investing in proven community alternatives. This victory comes during a time when people in all 50 states and around the world have risen up in protest of the recent murders of Black people at the hands of the police, including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and far too many others. It comes at a time when we are rising up against the police-aligned white supremacist violence that stole the life of Ahmaud Arbery, an ongoing epidemic of violence and murder from the general public that Black trans people—especially Black trans women—face, it comes during the time of a global pandemic in which Black and Indigenous people, along with other communities of color, migrants, disabled/Deaf/ill people, and elders are hit most severely.

Recently, over 700 LGBTQ organizations from across the country and the globe signed a letter in support of Black lives, stating that now is the moment to go further and make explicit commitments to embrace anti-racism and end white supremacy. The letter went on to say “we cannot remain neutral, nor will awareness substitute for action.”

Black LGBTQ leaders in Minneapolis and Black leaders across the nation have clearly laid the path for what it means to “go further” and have outlined the specific actions that are necessary in order to create communities that value Black lives. They are illustrating what safety and support means, especially for those who have been most impacted by systemic racism and state violence. Today, we add our voices in support of the local Black-led community groups in towns and cities across the country like Black Visions Collective. We join elected officials like Andrea Jenkins and Phillipe Cunningham, and we join national organizers like the Movement for Black Lives.

We issue a collective call to defund the police and invest in communities. Concrete, community-based alternatives can include investing in free or affordable community healthcare, funding mental health response teams to respond to mental health crises, funding violence prevention and intervention programs, creating access to safe and affordable housing for all, providing access to affordable and accessible transportation, funding advocates to provide help and safety to people who are homeless, funding elder services, funding independent living opportunities for disabled communities, investing in quality jobs and education, funding treatment for substance use and addiction, providing access to child care, and many more.

We remind ourselves that when the LGBTQ movement began, Black and brown trans women who were often living with disabilities and illness were taking care of their communities without institutional support: they housed one another, found family in one another, and kept each other safe. All without police — because they knew the police provided no safety and in fact threatened their well being just as they had before the Compton Cafeteria and Stonewall Rebellion. We already have community care systems in place right now. Imagine if the billions of dollars in police budgets were channeled to that community care instead.

We commit to use the full extent of our reach and platforms to advance and win this demand locally and nationally. We commit to joining local campaigns, joining national calls to action, and using our connections to increase support and resourcing of Black LGBTQ-led groups and organizations in leadership of these campaigns. We pledge throughout all of our actions to follow the wisdom and experience of Black leadership. We have shown that when we join together as a movement, we can win. As an LGBTQ movement, we again must affirm we cannot remain neutral. Now is the time to push forward with the demands that have already been laid out by Black organizers. We will not accept anything less than defunding the police and investing in communities.

1199 LGBTQA Caucus

All Under One Roof LGBT Center


American Civil Liberties Union

American University Washington College of Law

API Equality-LA

APIENC (API Equality – Northern California)

Arianna’s Center

Audre Lorde Project

Autistic Women & Nonbinary Network


Beyond These Walls

Black AIDS Institute

Black and Pink

Black LGBTQ+ Migrant Project

Black Visions Collective

Boston Alliance of LGBTQ Youth (BAGLY, Inc.)

Bowen Public Affairs Consulting

Brave Space Alliance


California TRANScends

CARES of Southwest Michigan

Casa Ruby

Center for Constitutional Rights

Center for LGBTQ Economic Advancement & Research

Deaf Queer Resource Center

Decrim NY

Detained Migrant Solidarity Committee

El/La Para TransLatinas

Entre Hermanos

Equality New York

Equality North Carolina

Esperanza Peace and Justice Center


Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement


Freedom, Inc.

Fresh Meat Productions

Fund for Trans Generations at Borealis Philanthropy

GAPIMNY-Empowering Queer & Trans Asian Pacific Islanders

Gay City: Seattle’s LGBTQ Center


Gender Diversity

Gender Justice LA

Gender Justice League

Genders & Sexualities Alliance Network (GSA Network)

Global Justice Institute


Harlem Pride

Housing Works

Ingersoll Gender Center

Institute for Tongzhi Study

Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project


Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club

Just Practice

JustUs Health

La Gender Inc

Legal Aid Society

LGBTQ Allyship

LGBTQ Caucus of The Association of Legal Aid Attorneys/UAW Local 2325 (ALAA)

LGBTQ Workers Center Chicago

Louisiana Trans Advocates

Lourdes Perez Music


Make The Road New York

Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition


Mirror Memoirs

Montana Gender Alliance

More Light Presbyterians

MPD 150

My Sistah’s House

National Council of Jewish Women

National Equality Action Team

National Lawyers Guild

National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network

National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA)

National Working Positive Coalition

NEAL Together: A Community for Change

New York Transgender Advocacy Group

Newburgh LGBTQ+ Center

OutFront Minnesota


OutRight Action International

Parivar Bay Area

Peacock Rebellion

PFLAG San Antonio

Positive Women’s Network-USA

Prevention Access Campaign

Pride Center of Vermont

Pride Community Services Organization

Pride Foundation


Queer Cultural Center (QCC)

Queer Detainee Empowerment Project

Queer Women of Color Media Arts Project – QWOCMAP

Radio VoxFem

RANCHO Tonantzin

Reclaim the Block

Reframe Health and Justice

San Francisco Transgender Film Festival

Santa Fe Dreamers Project

SAVE – Safeguarding American Values for Everyone

Sero Project

Siskiyou Abolition Project

Social Justice Committee – First Presbyterian Church

Solutions Not Punishment Collaborative

Somos Familia

Somos Familia Valle

Southerners On New Ground

Still Here San Francisco

Sylvia Rivera Law Project

Texas Rising

The Aliveness Project

The National LGBTQ Workers Center

The Pride Center of Maryland

The Transgender District

The TransLatin@ Coalition

The Well Project

Third Wave Fund

TKO Society

Trans Equity Consulting

Trans Justice Funding Project

Trans Lifeline

Trans March SF


Trans* Leadership Alaska

TRANScending Barriers

Transformations Counseling Services

Transgender Education Network of Texas (TENT)

Transgender Gender-variant and Intersex Justice Project (TGIJP)

Transgender Law Center

Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico

TransMen Rising

TransVisible Montana

Unity Fellowship of Christ Church NYC

U.S. People Living With HIV Caucus

U.T.O.P.I.A. Seattle

Vision Change Win

VOCAL-NY, People’s Action

Woodhull Freedom Foundation

Youth Represent

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